In 2014, the Alliance for Drama Education established an annual scholarship that grants a T-Shirt Theatre student or alumni with $1,000 to pursue higher education.
How to apply
The $1,000 Walt Dulaney and George Kon Scholarship is housed at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation. Students need to seek inclusion in the annual HCF Common Application. Once in the HCF portal, they will be poised to receive scholarships from over 150 donors.
Darian Aquino | 2018 Recipient
I want to thank the man himself, George Kon. He definitely pushed me to get past my limits. I’m honored to be in T-Shirt Theatre. I don’t know where I would be or what I’d be doing if theatre hadn’t become such an important role in my life. I jump started my theatre passion in seventh grade, having already found an interest in making crazy skits on YouTube with my friends. Tiffany, my older sister and TST-alumna, inspired me to join TST. Many amazing experiences and opportunities were opened up to me in the midst of all of it. I’m currently attending Pacific Rim Christian University, majoring in Bible and Worship Arts. My goals and aspirations keep changing but my main focus now is to really keep my eyes on God and what he has to offer. I also plan on applying to my dream school, Cornish College of the Arts, after receiving my AA. I see myself on stage, not just in Hawaii, but on Broadway. I know it’s going to take lots of patience and perseverance, but I will never let my dreams just be dreams.
Eleonor Simonette Ines | 2017 Recipient
This scholarship will impact my future by allowing me to experience what University of Hawai‘i at Manoa has to offer. I plan to complete a double major (English and Education) to pursue my career as an English professor at a community college or a university. I’m one step closer to my goal!
This opportunity is a great relief not only for me, also for my parents considering we are low-income. I’m truly happy that I’ll be the first-generation college student in my family with the generous support given by Walt Dulaney and George Kon. College will be a fun adventure to experience. Thank you for giving me hope and giving me the opportunity to become a better individual. I will be able to expand my knowledge and learn different skills that I will need as a teacher. As a future teacher, I hope I’ll be able to support and inspire others just as you have helped me. – Eleonor Simonette Ines
Lani Felicitas | 2016 Recipient
Adriana Jones | 2015 Fall Recipient
The deserving recipient of the second Walt Dulaney and George Kon scholarship is Adriana Jones, Farrington High School Class of 2015 Valedictorian.
Before I became a member of T-shirt Theatre, most people knew me as a shy and soft-spoken person. It was difficult for me to start conversations with others and answer questions in class because I would always feel extremely nervous. That all changed when I started performing with T-Shirt Theater. I learned to step out of my comfort zone and how to better express myself. I’m grateful for T-Shirt Theatre cultivating my skills as a speaker and as a presenter. I would’ve never thought that I would go on to compete in prepared speaking for HOSA-Future Health Professionals and winning second place at the state level. I never thought that I’d be able to present in front of five judges in order to pass my senior project.
The speaking and interpersonal skills that I gained after being a member of T-Shirt Theatre go beyond my years in high school. In fact, I was hired for a competitive internship this past summer with Hawai’i Pacific Health, where the very skills I gained from T-Shirt Theatre helped me work well with patients at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and children. They say the interview is the hardest part because of how nerve-wracking it can be; however, I was able to walk in with confidence and respond eloquently.
Now, as a college student at Pacific University, I’ve noticed that I tend to be on the more outspoken spectrum of students in my classes. From sharing my thoughts on effective altruism and Peter Singer in my freshman seminar class to participating in my Spanish 201 class, I always think back on how I used to be before I was given the opportunity to be a part of T-Shirt Theatre. P.S. Mahalo nui loa George and the TST Ohana, for everything!
Jake Martin | 2015 Spring Recipient
The first recipient of the Walt Dulaney and George Kon Scholarship was Jake Martin who received $1,000 to support his college career. He emigrated to Hawaii with his family at age seven. Jake said watching cartoons in the Philippines helped him learn English. All of his three siblings dropped out of school. He earned a 4.3 GPA and was one of six valedictorians in his class. By graduation, he was already taking classes at Honolulu Community College.
I’m from Ilocos Norte, Philippines and it was life on the farm, Jake said. We were one of the poorest families there. [Now] I am on a full ride: grants from Princeton University, Federal Pell Grant and my scholarship from you” said Martin. The Dept. of Education noted that Jake is the first student from Farrington to be accepted into an Ivy League school in the last four years and possibly the first to ever be accepted into Princeton.
I do aspire to start my own non-profit organization one day to make sure I give something back. I did not know that it was the first ever TST scholarship. Thank you so much! I didn’t get a chance to tell you how much TST had affected me. It really was the beginning of me breaking out of my shell. It gave me the confidence to step outside the box. I’m honored that I was able to participate in that program for over a year. Thank you for everything! I had just claimed the award. –Jake Martin